Shakespeare is Alive at the Folger Theater
I admit that I may be a bit more of a Shakespeare enthusiast than most, but even so, seeing one of Billy Shakes’ plays brings the writing to life for anyone. Honestly, it is fun to watch! Seeing it performed makes it alive and modern, and certainly brings a new appreciation to age old classics.
This weekend, I went to the final dress rehearsal of Shakespeare’s The Comedy of Errors at the Folger Theater, for free. I had never been into the Folger Theater before, but there are archives and research rooms which have amazing display cases of crazy potions and stories of the olden ages. They had everything on display from Mole blood to a giant hair ball, it was actually rather disgusting.
The stage for The Comedy of Errors looked like it was straight out of Babes in Toyland. It had bright colors, dozens of doors, a little band off stage right and bright lights. I consider the costumes something along the lines of Anthropologie meets a saloon. The puffy women’s dresses with crazy colors of sophistication and fun mixed well with the men’s pinstripe suits and plaid shirts. Oh – and all of the male characters wore masks. The artistic director explained why the masks were necessary, and he said…”don’t we live everyday with a mask on?” Certainly we do; indeed we do.
This play has the perfect slapstick humor, where the laughter of the old man behind me only enhanced the experience. And it’s one of the few plays where no one dies…yes, a Shakespeare play where no one dies! A set of twins were separated at birth and confuse an entire town when they move back to the same area…you can probably assume all of the mishaps that happen when the twins are mistaken for one another.
Whenever we read Shakespeare in a classroom, we need to analyze every conversation, every monologue, and even the stage directions. Whenever we see a Shakespeare play performed, it all comes to life, we see the action, we don’t notice the themes, and can just appreciate the writing as it is. IT IS NOT CONFUSING, and the dialogue is ever so natural!
The acting was stellar and the characters were way over the top, but rightfully so, so that they weren’t drowned out by the set and the lines.
The show runs from January 25-March 6, so check out folger.edu.theater for college night and other ticket discounts.
Posted in City Life